"Nationalism, Secessionism, and Autonomy"


Thursday March 2, 2023
2:30 pm - 4:00 pm

The Centre for the Study of Democracy and Diversity and the Department of Political Studies Present:

André Lecours - University of Ottawa

"Nationalism, Secessionism, and Autonomy"

Thursday, March 2, 2023 | 2:30-4:00 PM

Dunning Hall Room 11, 94 University Avenue, Kingston

Light refreshments will be served!

Abstract: The strength of secessionism in liberal-democracies varies in time and space. Inspired by historical institutionalism, Nationalism, Secessionism, and Autonomy argues that such variation is explained by the extent to which autonomy evolves in time. If autonomy adjusts to the changing identity, interests, and circumstances of an internal national community, nationalism is much less likely to be strongly secessionist than if autonomy is a final, unchangeable settlement. Developing a controlled comparison of, on the one hand, Catalonia and Scotland, where autonomy has been mostly static during key periods of time, and, on the other hand, Flanders and South Tyrol, where it has been dynamic, and also considering the Basque Country, Québec, and Puerto Rico as additional cases, this book puts forward an elegant theory of secessionism in liberal-democracies: dynamic autonomy staves off secessionism while static autonomy stimulates it.

Biography: André Lecours is a professor in the School of Political Studies at the University of Ottawa. His main research interests are Canadian politics, European politics, nationalism (with a focus on Quebec, Scotland, Flanders, Catalonia, and the Basque country) and federalism.  He is the author of Nationalism, Secessionism, and Autonomy (Oxford University Press, 2021), Basque Nationalism and the Spanish State (University of Nevada Press, 2007), and the co-author (with Daniel Béland) of Nationalism and Social Policy: The Politics of Territorial Solidarity (Oxford University Press, 2008).  He is the editor of New Institutionalism: Theory and Analysis (University of Toronto Press, 2005).